11 user 2 critic

American Empire (1942)

Passed | | Western | 11 December 1942 (USA)
Two men join forces to build a cattle empire, battle rustlers, bad weather and each other.


William C. McGann (as William McGann)


J. Robert Bren (screenplay), Gladys Atwater (screenplay) | 3 more credits »


Complete credited cast:
Richard Dix ... Dan Taylor
Leo Carrillo ... Dominique Beauchard
Preston Foster ... Paxton Bryce
Frances Gifford ... Abigail 'Abby' Taylor
Robert Barrat ... Crowder (as Robert H. Barrat)
Jack La Rue ... Pierre - Beauchard Henchman
Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams ... Sailaway (as Guinn Williams)
Cliff Edwards ... Runty
Merrill Rodin Merrill Rodin ... Paxton Bryce Jr. (as Merrill Guy Rodin)
Chris-Pin Martin ... Agustin - Beauchard Henchman (as Chris Pin Martin)
Richard Webb ... Crane
William Farnum ... Louisiana Judge
Etta McDaniel ... Willa May
Hal Taliaferro ... Malone
Learn more

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Two men join forces to build a cattle empire, battle rustlers, bad weather and each other.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The Nation-Blazing Epic of America's Westward March! See more »




Passed | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


The failure of the original copyright holder to renew the film's copyright resulted in it falling into public domain, meaning that virtually anyone could duplicate and sell a VHS/DVD copy of the film. Therefore, many of the versions of this film available on the market are either severely (and usually badly) edited and/or of extremely poor quality, having been duped from second- or third-generation (or more) copies of the film. See more »


Paxton Bryce: At least we had some excitement when we owned the old Hattie T.
Dan Taylor: Wasn't it your idea to swap her for this?
Paxton Bryce: Yeah, but the whole set-up has changed! There was a war on - a man could make some real money. Or don't you remember?
Dan Taylor: Oh, I remember all right. I remember getting a broadside from a Union gunboat amidships and taking splinters from my, um, hide for two weeks.
Paxton Bryce: You got a hundred dollars for each splinter.
Dan Taylor: That's right - in Confederate money!
See more »


Little Pal
by Lew Pollack
Sung by Cliff Edwards (uncredited)
See more »

User Reviews

Ambitious Epic of Post Civil War Texas
20 July 2003 | by bsmith5552See all my reviews

"American Empire" is another of a series of modestly budgeted features produced by Harry "Pop" Sherman, who also was responsible for the highly successful Hopalong Cassidy series. This one deals with the emergeance of the cattle ranches in Texas in the years following the Civil War.

Two soldiers of fortune, Dan Taylor (Richard Dix) and Pax Bryce (Preston Foster) are ruuning a freight business from their riverboat. One day they meet up with the unscrupulous Dominique Beauchard (Leo Carillo) who is driving cattle to his home state of Louisiana. The boys agree to transport the cattle to their destination for a set fee. When Beauchard fails to pay up they keep the cattle and decide to go into the cattle ranching business.

Into the mix comes Taylor's sister Abby (Frances Gifford) with whom Bryce falls in love and marries. They soon have a son Pax Jr. (Merrill Rodin) and Pax Sr. becomes more and more ambitious as time goes on, much to the chagrin of his partner Dan. He has angered the smaller ranchers by refusing them permission to drive their cattle across his land. The ranchers decide to stampede the cattle through but Pax Jr. is killed in the stampede.

Bryce becomes distraught and decides to erect barb wire fences around the ranch which forces Dan to dissolve their partnership. All this is resolved at the end when all realize that progress must prevail over the ambitions of one man.

Also in the cast are Guinn "Big Boy" Williams and Cliff Edwards as the comic relief, Jack LaRue and Chris-Pin Martin as Carillo's henchmen, and veterans William Farnum and Hal Taliaferro in other roles.

Foster is really the star of the movie despite being billed third. He delivers a solid performance. Dix, who was top billed, is really only a supporting player. Gifford looks lovely as the heroine. The action is well staged and there's one dandy of a gunfight at the climax of the film.

A good western.

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Release Date:

11 December 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Muralha de Fogo See more »

Filming Locations:

Kernville, California, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Wide Range System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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